One Night with My Niece

So last night, I went over to put Thea to bed (brother and sis-in-law had gone out for dinner and a movie).

7.20pm: Time to bring Thea home (from my place) for her bedtime. Went through her usual rituals – Hug and kiss ye ye(爷爷 ), nai nai (奶奶), and po dou (婆逗). She picked out one of my sandals for me to wear, managed to convince her to let me wear my slippers instead lol!

7.30pm: Finally out of the door.
me: Thea come, gu gu (姑姑) carry you down?
T: no.

me: Piggy back?
T: no.
(proceeds to hold my hand and walk down the stairs)
me: sigh this is going to take awhile..

7.45pm: We reach the foot of her block (they live in the block of flats next to mine). Realised I forgot to bring their house keys. darn.

8pm: Finally entered her house. She runs to let Candy (the dog) out of her cage. And then waits for me to pass her Candy’s food bowl, before running over to the Kibbles box. She scoops out 3 scoops of Kibbles, and very carefully carries the bowl over to Candy’s eating spot. Meanwhile, Candy is salivating..probably thinking why this little human is taking so long lol!

8.05pm: Made Thea’s milk and brought her to her room. Switched off the lights and switched on the air con. Laid next to her. Tried not to fall asleep.

8.15pm: She finished her milk. But she’s not asleep yet!

T: mooshic. mooshic! MOOSHIC!
Me: ???
Me: Oh! Music! Okay. 
(Climbs out of bed to switch on her music — so her baby monitor is quite ups lol, can play nursery rhymes..each cycle lasts about 15 minutes, I think)

8.16pm: Climbed back into bed. Just about to close my eyes when suddenly,

T: Pooh bear! Pooh bear!
Me: *mutters* oh god.
Me: Okok I go find! 
(searches the entire house, fails to find Pooh bear. Meanwhile, door to her bedroom is slowly swinging shut. She cries. I panic.)
Me: Thea, gugu can’t find Pooh bear! (sees a stuffed rabbit at the head of her bed) Can you hug rabbit instead?
T: No!
Me: *sigh* Okay, wait ah. I ask pa pa where’s Pooh bear okay?
(Finally locates Pooh bear)

8.30pm: The music stops.

T: mooshic!
Me: I’m on it!

8.40pm:

T: Hi Mi Ow. Hi Mi Ow!
Me: Whut?? (Thinks she’s just babbling nonsense, and so I ignore her)
T: Hi Mi Ow!!
Me: o.o
Me: omg is she talking to herself?? to someone?? is she saying Hi meow?! omg help!
T: Hi Mi Now!
Me: …………..
Me: OH OH! Hide Me Now? You want me to sing Hide Me Now?
Me: (proceeds to sing)
T: Again!
Me: (sings)
T: Again!
Me: (hums the song)
(At this point, her baby monitor music stops)
T: MOOSHIC! (I turn on the music again and crawls back into bed)
T: Hi Mi Ow!
Me: (hums) (thinks to myself: when does this stop??)

At some point, I fall asleep lol. I assume she fell asleep too shortly after.

10.30pm: I wake up. I need to pee. I very carefully climb out of bed, and try to open the room door quietly.

I failed. She stirs. I freeze.
T: Du du? (She calls me that because she can’t pronounce the ‘g’ sound)
Me: *turns around and walks over* Hi! Thea, can gu gu go to the toilet?
T: *thinks* okay.

10.35pm: I crawl back into bed.

Me: Okay come let’s go back to sleep
T: …
T: mooshic.
Me: *omg* 
(goes to switch it on)

Thankfully, this time she falls back asleep quite quickly.

 

 

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It’s been 6 months!

Oh wow time has really flown by this year…In the blink of an eye, I’ve already been working for 6 months! There’s really so much to give thanks to God for.

It is really amazing to see how He has sustained me and helped me all this time at work. Couple of examples:

  1. Times where it seemed like my cleaning session was going to be a mess, but things turned out well in the end.
  2. The time when I had high rate of volunteer and Champions (our regular volunteers) drop out, but everything kinda worked out in the end because there was also a homeowner who pulled out of the session last minute.
  3. The other time that there was a homeowner drop out last minute on cleaning day (just last week actually, lol), and we randomly met a Lions Befriender at the void deck, and he was able to help us approach 2 seniors on his list, and they were willing to let us go in and help clean their houses even though it was so last minute!
  4. Good work colleagues!!!!! Still think it’s really amazing how there is like no politics in our office! It’s most probably because everyone has the same goal in mind – to put God’s love into action, by bringing people together to build (or in our case, clean) homes, communities and hope.

Also, one thing that I really liked about starting work was, having time (and more importantly, money LOL!) to pursue interests and things that I never had the time to do before! I’ve managed to take up Guzheng lessons again (It’s been 8 long years since I’ve touched it in Secondary school), and I’ve also started gymming more regularly (trying to keep fit heh!) The downside, I guess, is that with all this extra money, I’ve also been online shopping a lot :/ bad habit that I really need to curb..

The other downside, and the far more important one, is that after starting all these activities, I’ve not been spending too much time with God, and it’s something I really really want to work on! Going to start setting aside time everyday to do my QT, read the word, and talk to God. Hoping to start reading more christian lit too..have bought so many books from Logos Hope, but it’s all just sitting on my shelf lol.

Father, I thank You for sustaining me all this time, and for helping me so much even though I’m so unworthy. Give me the discipline to set aside (and follow) time every day to spend with You, and grant me the desire to want to know You more and more.

2015 Reflections and Thanksgiving

This post is long overdue lol. Have been meaning to write this since 2 weeks ago, but was never able to get started.

Anyway, I was looking back at this past year, and I realised, that I’ve done so incredibly little, and yet I’ve done so much too. You see, in actuality, I’ve only done 2 things last year, the internship in church, and the mission trip on Logos Hope. And yet, these 2 things have given me so much experience, more than I’ve asked for, and they have also step by step led me to where I am today.

So I graduated in December 2014, and had no idea what I wanted to do, apart from the fact that I knew I did not want to do anything that was related to my degree in Mass Communication. Not that I didn’t like the work. I love it. But I also decided that I wanted a job with a better work-life balance, and not having to go for entire weeks working from 7am to 12am or later doing production work and not seeing my family. I really really love the job as I mentioned in a previous post. But it was just not something I could envision myself doing for a long time.

Thus, in 2015, I decided I was going to go into Social Work. Somehow between then and now, I got the opportunity to go on Logos Hope for a 3-month short term programme. However, since my trip on Logos Hope was only happening in August, that meant I had almost half a year to spare. And so after talking to my youth pastor, I decided to join the church as an intern for 3 months starting in March. It was a really wonderful experience as I got to see the inner workings of a church, and got exposed to different ministries as well. Through this, I got to help prepare for the church camp, and also got to join the Children’s Ministry as a helper (and this year, I’ve also taken on the role of teaching in CM), among other things. We did weekly devotions every Tuesday morning, and it was nice to hear from the team about things they had learnt or discovered as they read the Word of God.

In August, I embarked on my first ever (and longest too) mission trip on Logos Hope. I had no idea what to expect, but I had the time of my life there. It was really great to be able to minister to people, simply talking and being there for them. I was also able to challenge myself to step out of my comfort zone. I performed and connected with the visitors in Taiwan, went on a prayer walk in Penang, and visited an orphanage and a home church in Myanmar. And in between all this, I got to work with the most amazing team onboard the bookfair. Sure there were time where I felt useless and had no idea what I was doing there or what my purpose was. But times like these, I can only remember that God had sent me there for a purpose, I may not know, but God knows, and that is all that matters.

When I came back in October, I was in sort of a limbo period. Not knowing what comes next, all I could do was rest and start applying for jobs. Though, honestly, I did a lot more resting than applying! I think I applied for a total of 10 jobs in a period of 3 months! Hah. But anyway, after 3 interviews at different places, I’m glad to say that I was finally offered a job. And a huge plus was that this was the position that i liked the most and was most hopeful and excited about.

Looking back, I can honestly say that, everything that has happened to me so far, was really by the grace of God. God led me to Logos Hope, led me to work in my church office, and these 2 have, I believe, ultimately led me to this organisation that I will be working for. How do I know and believe that? I actually applied for this position back in July, but had not received any reply then. I only got the interview and offer after updating my resume when I came back, and these 2 experiences were of interest to my interviewer as she kept asking me about them. (It’s a Christian organisation too!). Therefore I can honestly say that I can see God’s hand in my life and He has been really good to me. There were times that I felt so completely far away from Him, that I’d thought He’d abandoned me. But no. This really reminds me of poem “Footprints in the Sand”

Footprints in the Sand

One night I dreamed a dream.
As I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand,
One belonging to me and one to my Lord.

After the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that at many times along the path of my life,
especially at the very lowest and saddest times,
there was only one set of footprints.

This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
You’d walk with me all the way.
But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life,
there was only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me.”

He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you.”

– by Mary Stevenson

PS. on a lighter note, I think it’s really annoying but funny that, when I had so much time (before I found a job), I was bored but could not find a decent drama to watch or rewatch. But now that I will be starting work soon (in a week’s time), I suddenly have so many dramas that I want to watch, both old and new lol. 8 of them, at last count. Sigh

PPS. Am really annoyed that I can’t find all my fav winter stuff and my country road bag. Meh. Bag and clothes, where art thou?

Bored

I’ve been feeling really, really bored the past few days! It got so bad that last night, I actually had a random itch to do math problem sums LOL and I even entertained the thought of going down to Popular and buying a math assessment book. Something wrong with me hahaha!

But seriously though..I think this has got to do with my life on the ship heh. Before going on the ship, I know I could have done what I’m doing now and not have a problem with it..like I can nua and laze in bed all day doing nothing for weeks and not be bored. But life on the ship was always so fast paced..there was something to do all the time. From working, to going out to do ministry, or even the many community events we have at night/during sailing. After having that kind of lifestyle for 3 months, it seems harder to just nua and do nothing at home lol..time to look for a job..meh.

 

Last day

So today was officially my last day working as a part time waitress. It’s been a good 5 years since I’ve been in the service industry and I think I can safely say that I’ve seen all. kinds. of. people. Like for real lol. I think now is a good time to quit before I start to get even more jaded.

I remember in the first 2 years or so that I worked, I really did become more patient after dealing with certain customers..but now after 5 years, I find myself getting annoyed and pissed off more often, even to the point of almost losing my temper. The way some customers act can really make you lose your faith in humanity (cliche as that phrase sounds, it’s true though)

But of course, there were also many nice customers who can really make your day.

All I can say is, there’s a bittersweet feeling about leaving a job that you’ve done for so long. Can’t hate it, can’t love it lol. But really, it’s been a good 5 years. And now it’s time to look forward to a new chapter of full time work in my life 🙂

A day in the life of the rich

So I’m on holiday in Cebu with my parents for a week. We originally wanted to go visit my sister in Hong Kong/Shanghai, but my mum couldn’t take leave for so long, so we decided to visit che che Lovely – the domestic helper that took care of me for 12 years since I was 2 years old. And it so happens that her husband, Glen, is a manager of this very exclusive boutique resort in Mactan. So he arranged for us to stay one night in one of the villas (Abaca only has 9 suites and villas in total!!). And that’s how we got to stay in heaven.

12pm: A driver picks us up at our current hotel to bring us to Abaca resort (That’s. Just. Next. Door. Like literally). Cold hand towels are given to us.

12.10pm: We are directed to the restaurant to wait while our room is getting prepared. We are served lime juice and egg rolls (love letters) while we sit on the sofa and gazed out into the ocean played games on our phones.

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Restaurant sofa with a view

12.30pm: we step into heaven..

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Huge and spacious villa

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Even had our own big balcony

1pm: Glen arranged for us to go on a dive/snorkelling trip. We are driven to the dive company in Shangri-La hotel just nearby. May I add that the Shangri-La compound is huuuuuuuge! Like they even have their on jetty and dive centre!

1.30pm: I suit up in my wetsuit and collect my gears, and we get on the boat. Its a 45 minute boat ride to the dive spot.

2.15pm: Time to jump in!

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Putting on my fins and getting ready

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Just before stepping off

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Getting ready to go down. Excites!!

Parents snorkelled around while I was down under. The waters were really clear and we (dive guide and I) saw many many things! Spotted 2 eagle rays too which are apparently very rare! Dive guide was so excited when he came up he told everyone at the dive centre and they were all amazed hahaha! Oh and we were also attacked by a trigger fish lol..apparently it’s mating season now so he’s very territorial. Nothing we could do there except block and kick him away with our fins and swim away. He had very sharp teeth too 😦

3pm: it’s sad but I barely have enough air left in my tank so we have to surface and return to dry land.

3.45pm: we arrive back at the dive centre, and are told that Abaca has arranged for us to return via speedboat (!!!)

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Riding a speedboat back to Abaca

4pm: we arrive back in Abaca in style! Cold hand towels await us again.

4.30pm: I’m just about to shower when the butler comes to inform us that Glen has arranged for a complimentary back and foot massage for us in the spa! So off we go again lol!

5.30pm: I can finally have my bathe. I feel clean again.

6.30pm: Che che Lovely arrives with Ylen (her daughter). G Jay is at home with the maid :(. We go for dinner at the resort restaurant. The restaurant is so high end that the chef comes out to take our orders personally, and even serves the last dish himself. Food is fantastic too!

11pm: I retire early for the night.

8.30am: We go for breakfast in the restaurant again. I’m still getting used to having people pull out and push in my chair for me. I still end up being a total klutz and sit down very chor lor-ly.

10am: We’re now getting ready to leave for Bohol. Damn I’m going to miss this place. Life is good when you’re rich. But for now, it’s back to reality..

Assurance

Talked to my mum 2 days ago while we were in the car on the way to church. I shared with her my worries about entering social work, about how I was looking at the SIM graduate diploma in social work course, but that they required applicants to have at least 2 years work experience in the sector first. I felt quite discouraged because that meant I had to work 2 years first (and I have no idea how to go about looking for work there with no qualifications whatsoever) before going back to school. Then my mum told me that before she conceived me, she actually prayed that if it was God’s will that she have another child, she would dedicate that child to His work, and that she felt very heartened when I first told her couple weeks ago that I wanted to enter social work. I think after talking to her, I felt a lot more convicted and encouraged. Maybe this is God’s way of assuring me that I’m doing the right thing, that I should just simply wait.

The past few days, my brother has been playing a Corrinne May CD in the car, and even thought the song isn’t included in that particular album, but the words of “Five Loaves and Two Fishes” just kept ringing in my head for some reason

Take my five loaves and two fishes
Do with it as you will
I surrender

Take my fears and my inhibitions
All my burdens, my ambitions
I hope it’s not too small

Father God, I may not have much to offer, but I pray that you will use me and what little that I have to do your work. Amen.